Jean Pendziwol's No Dragons for Tea:
Fire Safety for Kids (and Dragons)
Illustrated by Martine Gourbault
Children's books review by P.J. Rooks
Ages 3+ will probably enjoy this book.
Ages 8+ can probably read it themselves.
If you invite a dragon to tea, you should be very careful not to sprinkle any pepper around because, well, having a dragon sneeze across your pretty table of homemade biscuits and jam is more than just a social no-no or a possible health risk.
Germs? Bah! We're talking minor inferno here.
Oh dear. The embarrassed dragon covers his smoke-belching nose, but it's too late. The tablecloth and curtains are aflame, the smoke alarm is going off and yikes--it's really time to get the heck out of the house!
Maybe these annoying nasal flare-ups kill brain cells or something, but whatever his excuse, our poor dragon is not too bright. Luckily, though, he's hooked up with a sincere little pal who understands how things are supposed to be and doesn't mind providing instruction and correction for the less-informed.
Our well-trained hero knows exactly what to do--and what not to do--and puts her family's practiced plan into action. The dragon, on the other hand, does everything wrong.
"The room filled with smoke as I crawled on the floor
And started to make my way to the front door.
The dragon got scared and decided to hide,
But I knew when there's fire, we must get outside.
I grabbed his thick tail and with one mighty tug,
I pulled that big dragon from under the rug.
I crept down the hallway and said, 'Follow me,
I know the way out--we must meet by the tree.'
So Mom and the dragon and I all met there,
Then that silly old dragon went back for his bear!"
Perfect. From a parent's perspective, Pendziwol nabs it. In a fire, it is important to crawl, to get to the door, to have a set meeting place and never to hide or go back into the burning building.
There are some pretty scary fire safety for kids books out there, and one of the best things about No Dragons for Tea is that it isn't one of them,--but it does get the message out.
Pendziwol wraps her fire safety lesson in a fun story that kids will enjoy. It starts with a trip to the beach, is punctuated by emergency and ends with a tour of the fire truck.
Readers will walk away feeling more entertained than educated (feeling being the key word there) and in the back of the book is a short but info-packed fire safety rhyme and some tips for parents too.
(Is fire safety for kids only? Nuh-uh!)
An engaging story/rhyme, No Dragons for Tea: Fire Safety for Kids (and Dragons)is one of the best fire safety books out there.
Jean Pendziwol's other safety books are
Read more of P.J.'s reviews.
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